During the Covid times the gyms have shut and there is a limited amount of outdoor bootcamps and personal training allowed. So we have to think about how the urban environment affects our day to day activity. The Danish health authority have published this report on the urban environment.
Earlier this year I had the chance to attend RMIT’s Engaging for Impact event where they were talking about the Urban Observatory. Some areas in Melbourne don’t have much in terms of parks and natural resources where people can exercise for free. Now this can be detrimental for our health as we would have to travel far far away and our current lockdown laws don’t allow that. Parks create a happy space for people to play and walk in. We need more open spaces for people to run around in. Parks are great areas for people to meet and socialise in.
Walkability was talked about at RMIT’s Engaging for Impact and in the report. Walkability means how far you have to walk to places. Places within a 2km radius from people’s houses are close. I suppose as marathoners we don’t care a lot about walkability as we can run everywhere.
Cycling paths are another issue in Melbourne. Those that live far away don’t have greater access to cycling paths. The councils should build more paths to encourage exercise within their neighbourhood. Cycle paths should be safe and well lit
Safety was another feature heavily talked about at RMIT’s Engaging for Impact as well as in the report. Paths need to be well lit at night or otherwise people cannot walk home. Also there needs to clear signage as to where the path leads to. And for older people the paths should be safe to walk on.
Now is a good time to think about planning the environment whilst we are in lockdown for when we fully get out of lockdown. There should be more cycling paths for those that live in outer Melbourne. There also could be more greenery in places like Cranbourne and places where low income earners live.